Now, condoms for `dual purpose`

New Delhi: Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Monday said it will soon come up with a condom which will benefit gays as well as straight couples.

"We are developing a condom that will be used for anal as well as vaginal sex. Work is almost accomplished and it is called dual female condom," an ICMR official said.

Citing reason for introducing a dual condom, he said, "The present condom is best suited for vaginal sex and not anal sex. The high percentage of HIV and AIDS cases is mostly due to practise of anal sex and the present condom does not give protection."

Promotion of condom use is an essential component of any HIV prevention and care programme. With no international standards for condoms till date and frequent breakage and slippage, spread of infection during anal sex is high, he said.

ICMR is also working towards introducing nano fibres for condoms to avoid breakage and slippage. "Nano fibres will be used with latex so that frequent complains of breakage and slippage of condoms can be controlled," the official said.

In India, about 2.31 million people are HIV positive. Use of condoms have been a part of the national family planning program for decades. Apart from being an effective contraceptive, condoms are also a good tool for protection against AIDS.

The ICMR official said, "This will work wonders at this time when consensual sex between same gender individuals has been decriminalised by the High Court."